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OGC specifications figure prominently in NGA’s NSG standards baseline

Wayland, USA, 20 February 2007 – The U.S. Department of Defense’ National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) has issued a document, “Enabling A Common Vision” (https://portal.opengeospatial.org/files/?artifact_id=19983), which outlines the overall National System for Geospatial-Intelligence (NSG) standards baseline.

Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) Specifications figure prominently in this U.S. Federal and national baseline.

Shortly after September 11, 2001, the National Center for Geospatial Intelligence Standards (NCGIS) was formed by the NGA to develop and coordinate geospatial standards with other Department of Defense (DoD) agencies, other intelligence agencies, standards organizations, civil agencies, private industry, and foreign partners. These groups have worked with NCGIS to develop and mature a set of standards that enable data and service interoperability in the context of a service-oriented architecture (SOA).

As the document states, “The domestic civil community and the international community are implementing largely the same suite of common geospatial standards as the NSG..… This architecture is particularly valuable to the Homeland Security community within the NSG, allowing it to share investments in geospatial data and knowledge related to critical infrastructure and natural environments with U.S. cities, counties and other organizations to support the prevention and mitigation of national disaster and security situations.”

In “Enabling A Common Vision,” the NSG has endorsed a set of key specifications known collectively as the OGC Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) 1.0 baseline. These OGC standards include the OpenGIS Specifications for Web Feature Service (WFS), Geography Markup Language (GML), Web Map Service (WMS), Styled Layer Descriptor (SLD), Catalogue Services (CS-Web), and Filter Encoding Specification (FE). Other standards included are ISO 19115 Geographic Information – Metadata, and ISO 19119 Geographics Information – Services.

NGA’s position on standards stated in the document parallels a growing policy direction developing across the defense and intelligence community, and across many other communities of interest around the world, toward a greater mandate for open standards based, interoperable technology solutions.